Direct2Drive Tries New Game Rental Scheme

January 26, 2011 -

Direct2Drive, IGN's digital distribution channel for PC games, quietly launch a rental scheme for its line-up of games. For $5, users can try out select games from the site's catalog for five hours. If they like the game and want to buy it, they can simply pay the asking price and have $5 taken off the top of the purchase price.

Right now the selection of games that support this feature include Divinity II - Ego Draconis, F.E.A.R., Race Driver: Grid and Silent Hill: Homecoming. While the selection of games available during this early phase of testing is sparse, D2D promises that games supporting this function will “grow in time."

It is an interesting idea because it allows you to get a good taste of a game without committing to the full purchase price. Of course, it is all about balance and pricing: five hours in game priced at $15 seems like a waste, but $5 for that time in a $50 title might be worth it.

You can learn more about it here.

Source: ShackNews


Comments

Re: Direct2Drive Tries New Game Rental Scheme

I think they are going to have to do better than this.  $5 to demo a game (this is basically what you are getting)  when I bet most games they sell already have demos released is a lot.  A Netflix or Gamefly subscription lets you get pretty much any movie/game for not much more than what they are asking for 5 hours. 

Then there's OnLive, but that's a whole nother thing in itself.

Re: Direct2Drive Tries New Game Rental Scheme

Its to much, 7$ for a week or 3 days is better.


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Re: Direct2Drive Tries New Game Rental Scheme

Agreed.  If I'm paying 5 bucks and I won't get it back to try a game I may not like, I should get more than five hours of play time.  I can go to my local video store and rent a game for a week for five bucks, and if I want, I can buy it at a discount afterwards - with the original case and manual.

5 bucks for five hours of game time is a joke.

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Re: Direct2Drive Tries New Game Rental Scheme

A concern about the potential for OnLive I suppose?

OnLive offers free 30 minute play of some games.  And they have actual rental for a day or more for some games at a small price.

Their own catalog is pretty small as well, so D2D might be trying to stir up some competition.

Both, and probably some other potential companies, have a ways to go before this takes off.  Even so, someone might be getting a wee bit twitchy.

Nightwng2000

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Nightwng2000 NW2K Software http://www.facebook.com/nightwing2000 Nightwng2000 is now admin to the group "Parents For Education, Not Legislation" on MySpace as http://groups.myspace.com/pfenl

Re: Direct2Drive Tries New Game Rental Scheme

If they could gauge prices by average time of completion, that'd be nice- but complex and ultimately difficult to implement.

Re: Direct2Drive Tries New Game Rental Scheme

 Presuming that a $50 game has more content than a $15 game is a bit much. I've played $50 games where five hours is more than sufficient, and $15 games that wouldn't even have their surface scratched.

(Heck, I've bought two-dollar-discounted indie games on Steam that could provide hundreds of hours of gameplay.) 

Still, it is helpful, that this goes towards the cost of a purchase. It isn't really competitive with the sort of rentals that people are used to with games, where they can rent a game for days or maybe even a whole week for not much more than five bucks. As a "try before you buy" gambit, though, it's a pretty nice idea. It'll help reduce that feeling you get that you're gambling sixty bucks every time you purchase something.

It also serves as a good counterpart to Steam's sale methods. Steam provides deep discounts of older titles at regular intervals. That's great for building the "long tail" of sales that had been missing in gaming, but it doesn't help those who want to try out something new. This does.

 
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